tv CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin CNN January 30, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PST
hi there, i'm brooke baldwin. hours before now, the president will be speaking before a joint session of congress. face-off with his own justice department. the conflict is -- and the president wants the memo released as soon as possible we just got word but not before his big speech this evening. voting along party lines with republicans agreeing that the memo should go public.
a justice official calls the move, quote, extraordinarily reckless. it also leaves president trump and republicans open to attack by democratic leaders. they say the memo is an attack specifically on special counsel robert mueller and russia investigation on the whole. senate minority leader chuck schumer. >> the white house, congressional republicans attack s on mueller, makes you believe it was taking place in a putin's rusha. a different kind of president would want to know how precisely russia meddled in our election and would have severely punished putin for it to discourage him from ever trying it again. >> plus the president is refusing to impose more sanctions on russia. we'll get into that in a moment.
first, cnn's phil mattingly is live with me to talk about how lawmakers are boycotting this event. jeff zeleny, senior white house correspondent. hours before his big speech i understand the phrase from the sources are that the president will give eye-opening remarks on north korea and news on this m memo. what do you have? >> indeed, brooke. the memo is hanging over much of the conversation in the back room discussions even as the president is working on that speech. the president, i am told, will not talk about the russia investigation during the speech. that is something he does not want to be part of the speech. he wants it to be an uplifting speech, we're told, optimistic speech, we're told. listen to a lot of his topics. of course, the stock market had a record year in 2017. ironically it's going down
today. we're told that the president, of course, has a whole team of speech writers working on this. he, apparently, for several weeks and months, has been writing down thoughts and lines and paragraphs and handing them off to aides. it's about an hour-long speech. he practiced it once yesterday. he will likely practice is once again today. it's supposed to be uplifting and bipartisan. the substance in his policies are anything but bipartisan. this will be an opportunity for him to be in front of democrats and republicans. as for that memo, of course, he will not talk about that as well. at least he's not expected to. the president wants that released as soon as possible we're told. not today, of course, that would distract from the state of the union speech but perhaps as early as tomorrow or thursday, look for that to happen here. of course, that will escalate all the conversation about the drama between the fbi and the white house. at least for tonight in prime time, the president is going to
be giving a different message. watch for the policy specifics rather than the tone of what they're promising. >> down the road, phil mattingly, to you, at the hill. tell us how lawmakers are just not showing up. >> making a political point that the president will talk about in his speech, lawmakers are doing something similar. a bit of a tradition. democratic lawmakers are planning to bring daca recipients, make the point for ongoing debate on capitol hill. we're seeing a lot of protests. at this point at least a dozen, potentially more, democrats will not attend at all. they will be boycotting this. by my count that's the most lawmakers to boycott the state of the union since 1971. look into the rationale, it's a little diversified, some saying they don't respect the president or don't feel the president
respects them. a handful of black caucus members upset about the vulgar remarks in the white house, john lewis made no secret about his dislike or disdain for the president's tone will also not be attending. i've been told by several democrats that democratic leadership said you don't want to go if you have a problem with the president, just don't go. don't walk out, make a big scene. don't draw attention away from things. that's what they're saying here. lawmakers boycotting, trying to make policy perspectives as well. lawmaker lawmakers bringing issues about storm-ravaged puerto rico. they're doing it for a reason. we'll keep a close eye on it. number of lawmakers not attending for various reasons is certainly something we haven't seen in any recent history.
>> reese's niece is coming up in a little while. she's the congresswoman's. in this memo the fbi abused surveillance warrants to get campaign members. voting along party lines to reject the public release if you will of the counter memo. top democrat speaking to jim sciutto moments ago. >> you're saying you've read the underlying intelligence. when you look at that, it colors these allegations differently? >> absolutely. absolutely. that's what we set out in the document we prepared. it's what the republican members don't want, that the point, the country to see. it pokes holes in this memorandum.
they don't want the country to know how misleading their document is. >> let's discuss. with me now, cnn justice correspondent jessica schneider, jamie gangel, mark preston and kim whaley, associate independent counsel during the whitewater investigation into president clinton. thanks for having me. and, mark, just beginning with you, what is this memo really all about? under mining the mueller investigation, undercutting the fbi doj, what? >> it depends who you speak to. the underlying thought is from some republicans perhaps devin nunes specifically that he is trying to undermine the investigation at this point, trying to cast doubt and that he thinks the fbi has run amuck, that they didn't run the clinton investigation correctly and they certainly haven't run the trump investigation correctly.
when you take a step back, some nt in congress do believe that it should come out. it will have longstanding consequences over the next year because i do think that the idea of trust is absolutely out the window on capitol hill. >> what are you thinking on this? >> dysfunction with a capital d. you said along party lines. as mark said, this is political at the end of the day, whatever the motivation is. but i spoke to a republican source who knows what's been going on in that committee. and some of it is political and some of it is really about what happened. this source said, to quote, that what happened here is the fbi went about getting the fisa authority, either it was very sloppy or there was some
nefarious thing, quote. it calls into question the methods and tactics that the fbi was using and they were not as independent of thought as they should be. that said, as mark said, this is going to have political ramifications. the same source said to me, we don't want this to muddy the water. it shouldn't hurt the mueller investigation. but what did our reporters at the white house say? trump wants to release it as soon as possible. >> and the people in the white house are nervous that he will focus more on the memo in this classi classified room than on his speech tonight. >> he can't wait to get there. >> speaker of the house of representatives paul ryan, who says release the memo. and he also said this. >> this is a completely separate matter from bob mueller's investigation. there may have been malfeasance
at the fbi the by some the. we want this to come out so accountability can occur. >> what's his role in all of this? >> rod rosenstein, we know that the president has vented frustration about the deputy attorney general from four different sources. the president has floated this idea of firing the deputy attorney general. rod rosenstein oversees the yaush probe, the special coun l counsel. we know he is also at the centerpiece or one of the centerpieces of this nunes memo. it talks about overseeing this investigation and also reports have been that it talks about the fact that rosenstein did, in fact, reauthorize this secret surveillance on the former trump campaign foreign adviser carter page. could it further draw the ire of
president trump and could it make for ramifications for rod rosenstein or other members of the justice department? >> she brings up a good point. what are the legal ramifications of this? >> there's a problem with how this memo has been unfolded. the question is whether the justice department the exercised its authority under fisa and whether a judge properly authorized surveillance. for congress to come in and say, listen, they didn't do their job right, that's a straight-up constitutional abomination as far as i'm concerned. >> isn't the bar so high to get a fisa warrant or ultimately it's up to the judge, they have to corroborate? would you say this say guy just doing his job? >> it was a post watergate reform, about intelligence gathering, not about putting people in jail. the goal is really national
security. the extent to which congress releases that, their own rules say they can release it so long as the interest doesn't outweigh the public interest. i agree that it's political. it's political in a way that undermines the integrity of the criminal justice system. that's something we need to hold for generations, right? it's just not today. >> where does this lead? this is all kind of interconnected here. it leads me to chris wray. we know the news as of 24 hours ago, mccabe, his deputy, is out. sarah sanders has said the president has full faith in chris wray. why, does it seem tharkts president is protecting him? >> what chris wray's role? >> yeah, chris wray. >> i think he's an instrument for president trump to get what he wants done. we've seen him do that with everybody, from james comey
down, asking for loyalty, asking james comey to back off the investigation of mike flynn. president trump really does value loyalty to himself more than he values loyalty to the united states constitution or for our government as it has been established for hundreds of years now. chris wray, i think, is just a tool. at some point when donald trump tires of chris wray, chris wray is gone, too. >> the backdrop to all of this is the russia investigation. we want you to hear what former new jersey governor and federal prosecutor chris christie had to say about this. >> i don't think there's been any credible allegations against the president of the united states. unless there are credible allegations, which i don't believe there are, i don't think he should be sitting across from
special counsel. the presidency different. i don't think they should do that. >> wouldn't that be a telltale sign if trump says thanks, but no thanks, special prosecutor, that he has something to hide? >> there are political implications. that happens president trump will have to testify or plead the fifth. in that instance, sure, it looks like he has something to hide. this is a class act in terms of prosecutorial looking for the facts, identifying if there's any crime and moving on. that was the same thing that happened in the star investigation. people tried to politicize it. these are career people just doing their job. >> thank you all so much. appreciate it, every single one of you ahead here ahead of state of the union tonight. president trump will try to send a message, immigration, the framework the white house rolled out last week has already met resistance on both sides of the
aisle. can he close the deal tonight? also ahead a name you may not know but will likely see if you watch the state of the union, recy, in reference to recy taylor, the woman oprah winfrey highlighted in her speech at the golden globes. i'm brooke baldwin. stay with me. ...down-alternative pillows... ...and of course, price. tripadvisor helps you book a... ...hotel without breaking a sweat. because we now instantly... ...search over 200 booking sites ...to find you the lowest price... ...on the hotel you want. don't sweat your booking. tripadvisor. the latest reviews. the lowest prices. luckily, office depot®not officemax® is hereeart. to take care of you. ♪ taking care of business with print services done right. on time.
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ancestrydna can pinpoint where your ancestors are from... and the paths they took to a new home. could their journey inspire yours? order your kit at ancestrydna.com we're back live here in washington. i'm brooke baldwin. thanks for joining me. president trump has set a deadline, march 5th, for congress to find a permanent solution to protect hundreds of
thousands of d.r.e.a.m.ers. can he get democrats on board? congressional black caucus and former senior adviser for mitt romney's campaign and former rnc spokesman. welcome, welcome. the president is expected to talk about how great the economy has been since he has been in office these last 365 plus days. leave it to the senate minority leader to preempt him with a little shade. >> president trump was handed an already healthy economy by his predecessor. like many things in his life, he inherited the healthy economy. here are two words we won't hear president trump say tonight about the economy. thanks, obama. >> thoughts? >> well, he did not inherit consumer confidence, which is at a record high. the dow obviously speaks for itself. there's a number of really good indications that the economy is
growing. i would not want to be a democrat trying to run down this economy in 2018. i think it's going to keep going. it's going to explode even more. i think the first quarter when we see the impacts of the tax reform, that's all democrats have right now i wish them well with that argument. >> got a democrat right there. how would you respond? >> i think explode was a great choice of words because everything that donald trump touches tends to explode or implode, in some instances. so here we are. this same guy who would not believe the bureau of labor statistics and their employment numbers is now taking full credit for the same bureau of labor statistic numbers. i agree with maria earlier. she said thanks, obama. i agree with my leader, schumer. it's never good for us to question the strength of our economy, particularly while it's growing. i would ask president obama to retrack what he was doing during
the campaign. >> what about sources that the president is going to lean in on bipartisanship? if we take him at his word, angela rye, that is a good thing. you need both sides to play well in the sand box. >> i think the challenge that we have is donald trump's many faces, right? this is someone who regularly will do one thing and then turn around and there's a complete 180 the very next day. sometimes within minutes. i'm eager to see if that spirit of bipartisanship, spirit of unity, being stronger together, moving forward in a positive manner, reflecting true leadership will reflect on his twitter account tomorrow. >> fair point. it's a fair point. but, again, you think to the notion, a, of leaning in to bipartisanship a great thing. b, when you look at the folks writing the speech, one name that pops out at me as a hardline adviser is steven miller. how do you square the two in a speech tonight?
>> donald trump is proven very adept at this speeches and no matter who is writing it -- >> steven miller is one person. >> right. his problem is in the suburbs, with the voters who came over to him at the end of the campaign in 2016, but were doubt -- had questions about his temperament and tone. he has turned a lot of them off with his tweeting. he hasn't tweeted in two days. this is good news for most republicans. >> so even you acknowledge that. >> we start with small steps. start with small steps. his tone is the most important thing. if he can reach out on a little bit of consensus, i think it will go a long way. >> we have to note that kevin smiled during this whole thing because even he knows it's funny. >> congressman joe kennedy from massachusetts will be delivering the response tonight. 37-year-old great nephew of jfk.
democratic party picking him as their voice, maybe of the future, what do you make of that? what message are they sending? >> brooke, this is hard for me to say. i really believe in honesty. >> hit me. >> what this tells me is that democrats are completely missing the pulse of the culture. let me tell you. i'm sure, from everything i've seen about him -- he is an up and coming like great magnanimous leader but it's a legacy, dynasty family moment and what that says to me is that we didn't learn the lessons of the 2016 election. i supported hillary clinton. it took me a minute to come around but i definitely came around. just because we tried something once doesn't mean it will always work. there are paradigm shifts that happen in this country. we have to listen to what they are. i'll give you an example. congresswoman maxine waters is doing a rebuttal on my program.
i'm doing a special on b.e.t. instead of embracing that, it's almost pitting them against each other. >> maxine waters isn't even showing up tonight. >> absolutely. >> i would argue that how can one stand up against the president when you're not -- huge respect for maxine waters, congresswoman waters. if you can't show up and sit in the same room, is it fair to criticize? >> yes. let me tell you why. we staged a walkout when i was the cdc director. walking out because you want to hold someone in contempt of congress. this is the same president who called countries we respect, admire and honor shitholes. we can go on and on and on. what will it require of me to take a stand? congresswoman waters has always blazed that trail and so others
should also walk out or don't go. >> the tone of others is as important as the tone of the president tonight. if they stage walkouts, heckle the president or grown and look disrespectful i don't think that's going to help with middle of the road voters. >> would you agree it's not a good look for democrats if they're doing that, if you're staging a walkout? >> i respect a walkout a hell of a lot more than i respect the joe wilson you lie moment. >> you might see that tonight from democrats. >> you might. i would rather they walk out. >> do we know what democrats are going to do tonight? i respect that there may be loose canons or maybe more. i don't think that helps the democratic party right now. i think they're poised for a wave election if they can bring a positive, optimistic message to the american people. right now they haven't shown it. they've shown resist, resist, resist. >> i think you have to resist first before you can reach positivity. he is representing something that none of us stand for.
if we're honest about it, kevin, you don't even stand for a lot of what he pushes out. first you have to resist. then you turn the page and go in a different direction. walk out that door first. >> donald trump has been blessed by his opponents. he has got just as exciting opponents as he is. >> thank you so much. still ahead here on cnn, some lawmakers making their own silent statement, wearing pins with the name "recy" on them in memory of recy taylor, a black woman who was raped by six white men during the jim crowe era and never got justice. you know what's awesome? gig-speed internet.
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it has become a custom in state of the union for lawmakers to bring a special guest to represent a polish. while tonight's speech is no exception, many democrats are rallying behind a single cause. the me too, times up movement. new jersey congresswoman bonnie watson-coleman will be joined by rose gunther, niece of the late recy taylor, whose story is so significant in the story of race and gender inequality yet so few of us knew about her until, of course, leave it to oprah to highlight her story at the golden globes. >> a name i know and i think you should know, too. in 1944, recy taylor was a young wife and a mother. she was just walking home from her church service she attended
in albertville, alabama, when she was abducted by six armed white men, raped and left blindfolded by the side of the road, coming home from church. they threatened to kill her if she ever told anyone. the men who tried to destroy her were never persecuted. recy taylor died ten days ago. >> recy taylor's niece, rose gunther, joins me now along with me, beth hubbard, who produced a film called "the rape of recy taylor." thank you so much. i see your red recy pins. she ordered up these recy pins for she and her colleagues to wear tonight. when you got the call to be there for miss taylor, what was all of this like for you? >> it was exciting and something
that i would want to do for her because i know she would want it done. and something to carry on her legacy. >> and sitting in that hallowed hall tonight, what will you be thinking? >> what a great inspiration she were, a loving person, strong, courageous. >> speaks up. here is my question to you. so many people -- let me just be honest, myself included, we weren't aware of recy taylor's story until, of course, leave it to oprah. what's extraordinary about her is here she was, gang raped leaving church and, unlike so many women at that time, she spoke up about it. tell me more about her. >> she did. i really think her life was a
vigil for justice. her brother and also rose talk about that it was really her faith and also the strong support of her father that had her -- she had the strength to speak up. so, you know, her life was really a vigil for this justice and for women not to be erased. that, you know, she really felt like black women have been fighting for their right to own their own bodies forever, before slavery. and now she had to speak up and say, don't erase us. we're here. we deserve justice. >> let me quote the congresswoman who invited you tonight. quote, beyond her terrifying experience, recy taylor is the representation of the many communities this strag has chosen to leave behind. you will be sitting there, listening to president trump's speech acres man so many people have called misogynistic,
racist. do you have anything to say about him? >> no. >> it's okay. you can take a minute. you can take a minute. >> well, he -- he is -- he doesn't have the -- no sense of -- oh, shoot. >> it's okay. >> sense of women -- about women. he has a bad reputation for women, i'll say. >> not only that, but i want to play a clip. this is from one of his advisers, kellyanne conway, who was on this morning, criticizing women who are choosing tonight to speak up, to wear black in
honor of the me too movement. here is kellyanne conway. >> they are so blinded by their reflects of hate and -- oh, my goodness. obstruct, resist. stop. don't do it. that is not a message. that impedes democracy. their biggest statement is going to be the color of their clothing? they're all going to wear black to, what, protest harvey weinstein? >> so, a woman criticizing women for standing up to women. do you have a response to her? >> she's -- not -- not really. >> she's speaking about both of you ladies and so many other women who are choosing to wear blk tonight. >> i think recy is the response and also, you know, her fight for this. our fight for this. it was always time to bring it
to light. and now the world understands that it's time and time's up. i think the rape of recy taylor shows that that journey of black women and women throughout the past and how we can learn from our history. >> rose, here is my final question. you were not only her niece but her caretaker, it's my understanding, until the very end. >> yes. >> what do you think she would be thinking now, knowing her story is coming out of oprah winfrey's mouth, waking up this country and now on the lapels of so many very powerful people here in washington? >> i think she would be happy. i think she would be glad that it got this far. and without her brother pushing it, it wouldn't have got this
far. when she came back, they talked about it. and he pushed it because he said he wanted justice for his sister. >> because she never got justice from those men. >> no. >> alabama said sorry but i'm not quite sure that fully cut it. >> no. >> no, it didn't. rose and beth, i appreciate both of you. thank you so much. >> president trump refuses to slap new sanctions on companies doing business with blacklisted entities instead putting them on notice. how the kremlin is reacting to all of this next. your insurance company won't replace the full value of your totaled new car. the guy says you picked the wrong insurance plan. no, i picked the wrong insurance company.
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on the attack, blasting president trump's inaction on russia, designed to punish russia for meddling in the 2016 presidential election. the trump administration made the stunning decision that sanctions are not needed. a law passed last year with overwhelming bipartisan support is doing its job, so they say more sanctions are not necessary. as required by that same law, a sweeping list of oligarches linked to russian president vladimir putin. cia chief says he expects russia to continue to meddle in our elections. >> do you have a sense that they might try to interfere in the u.s. mid terms coming up? >> of course. have every expectation they'll continue to do that but america will have a free and fair election that will push back that the impact they have on our election won't be great.
>> let's get reaction from the kremlin. cnn senior reporter matthew chance is live in moscow. what's the response to these developments from putin himself? >> reporter: there may be some democr democratic anger over the president not imposing more sanctions but some anger over here as well. president putin saying it certainly was not a friendly act and exacerbates the u.s./russian relationship that is already at the low point, that kremlin list of oligarches and political figures close to the kremlin, containing 210 names, much more generallyized, the kind of list that was anticipated, that was
meant to target those directly in the close circle of vladimir putin. the other thing the kem lynn says -- i think they're breathing a sigh of relief, that sanctions have not been ratcheted up on this occasion. look, this is just a list. we're not going to respond unless there is any kind of enforcement of the list, whether sanctions are actually imposed on any of these individuals and, for the moment it seems, the trump administration is not going to do that. so, as i say, some relief here in the russian camp. >> i'm sure there is. matthew, thank you so much, in moscow. next here on cnn, a selfless act of love by a new mexico police officer being recognized by the first family. he will be their guest at the state of the union. his story first highlighted by cnn in our "beyond the call of duty" feature. luckily, office depot® officemax® is here
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a police officer who adopted the baby of a homeless drug addict will be the guest tonight of the first lady's at state of the union. cnn first profiled the story of this albuquerque police officer and his incredible act of kindness in our "beyond the call of duty" feature and ed laven dar dera visited them. >> reporter: they feel like they're walking into the twilight zone. cnn first reported the story of how his family adopted the baby
of a homeless woman battling heroin addiction months ago. now holets and his wife, guests of the first family at the state of the union address. >> what's it been like for you? >> it's amazing. >> reporter: the journey started last september when ryan holets, albuquerque police officer, encountered in homeless couple, shooting up heroin behind a convenience store. >> how far along are you? >> eight months. >> reporter: oh, my gosh. >> crystal champ was eight months pregnant. >> reporter: you're going to kill your baby. >> reporter: it changed all their lives. baby hope is doing well and because of the first story, a florida treatment facility offered to help crystal and her partner, tom and that's where they are today. crystal calls the holets family
her guardian angels. >> i don't know where he came from, but i'm really happy he was here. i couldn't have prayed for this to happen the way it did because, you know, he basically adopted us, too. >> reporter: ryan speaks with them daily and says they're taking the first steps to getting sober. is there a message you want to take away from your story? >> everybody is redeemable. tom and crystal had value. hope had value. by following that, look where it's led. it's led to wonderful things happening. >> reporter: do you feel like you have this moment you want to make the most of it? >> it's actually been kind of a burden for me. you're kind of right. what do you say when you actually have the chance to meet the president? >> reporter: he says the addicted need more help and prescription pain meds are far too easy to find. do you worry or have any fear it
becomes a photo-op or a passing moment and nothing really changes? >> our responsibility is just to do what we can on our end. it's not our responsibility to do the president's job. there's hope. >> reporter: there's a new rock star in town. baby hope is about to charm her way through washington, d.c. she's almost 4 months. she's already going to her first state of the union, first trip to the white house this little girl is having a fun life so far. >> yeah. she has been around a little bit. she has gotten to see a lot of people and everybody loves hope. >> ed! ed! baby hope. >> end on the baby. >> you gave me babies today? i remember your last piece, it was a cliffhanger because the officer wanted the couple to get on plane to go to rehab and they couldn't. >> it was excruciating to watch
how powerful it is. when we last saw them right before christmas, last story they did. they had them at the airport to go to this rehab facility and they broke down, couldn't get on the plane. crystal hid in the bathroom in the airport to avoid getting on that plane. but a week later, they tried it again and this time they went. they've been there a little more than a month. so ryan and the holets family hope -- look, it's a long road. who knows what's going to happen. >> sure. >> they hope this is the first steps toward recovery and sobriety for them. >> for the officer and wife, too, this was baby number four, five? >> they have four of their own. >> and adopted baby hope as their fifth? >> as their fifth. >> incredible. >> they've got their hands full. >> yeah, they do, but, bless them. thank you for updating us on this story. good to see you. >> good to see you. we'll have the state of the union, including some unexpected eye opening -- that's a direct
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hi, there, i'm brooke baldwin live from the nation's capital for president trump's first state of the union speech. couple of hours from now he will be speaking before a joint session of congress. the country may get to see the memo that has now put the president at odds with his own department of justice. according to sources the president wants to go public with this memo as soon as possible but not before his big speech. the memo is classified and slams specific work by the fbi. last night the house intell